Weekly Photo: Acadia’s mountain-climbing OTTB

OTTB Miss Rubynell and owner/rider  Katherine Detmer enjoy the view at Acadia National Park in Maine.

OTTB Miss Rubynell and owner/rider Katherine Detmer enjoy the view at Acadia National Park in Maine.

Miss Rubynell and her owner/rider Katherine Detmer both packed up their old lives to start fresh in Maine.

Two years ago, Detmer was fresh out of architecture school and beginning her new career when she wrote a $1,000 check, money she could ill afford at the time, to buy the OTTB she’d made friends at the barn where she took riding lessons.

Miss Rubynell
New name: Eveliina
Barn name: Daisy
Sire: Secret Slewisky
Dam: Far Beyond Compare, by Pandan
Foal date: Jan. 31, 2003
After learning the mare she calls Daisy was to be swapped for a better lesson-horse prospect, Detmer grew concerned. “I had become attached to her … I asked what she would take to sign her over to me … and was told $1,000 and she was mine. I wrote the check that day having had no intention earlier that day of becoming a horse owner any time soon,” she says. “I was recently out of grad school and didn’t have spare change lying around, but it just felt right. This will be two years ago this fall and I haven’t regretted the decision once.”

Most recently, the pair has found true peace on the trails of Maine’s Acadia National Park, hacking in companionable quiet on busy bridle paths past expansive vistas.

In this photo, the pair takes a break during their first outing in the annual Deerfield Farm trail ride in Acadia, an event Detmer had previously only dreamed of.

“I was nervous heading out with my brave, but still new-to-the-woods mare,” she says. “But with her new herdmates by her side she settled into the trail amazingly quickly, passing bike, carriages, climbing mountains at sunset and calmly cantered along the beautiful trails.”

She adds, “I have even switched her to a bitless bridle and find her to be more responsive. She is an OTTB living a new life and doing so beautifully. She has become far more relaxed, gained even more weight and is very attached to her herd. I will never take her from her new life and I am glad I took the risk and believed in her.”

6 responses to “Weekly Photo: Acadia’s mountain-climbing OTTB”

  1. Kathryn Webers

    LOVE this!!
    Ms Detmer’s joy and commitment to her Daisy is such a pleasure to see.
    And I love the ad for the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation with the article. We do love horses, and everyone can give a little to the equine rescue of their choice. There are so many ways to help …. nationally or with horse rescues closer to home …. Massachusetts has some of the best equine rescues anywhere!
    Go on, you’ll feel better for it!

  2. cheri


  3. Ruth Plenty

    Katherine – you listened to your just felt right feeling, sometiems the best guide in life. Your last three words in the closing paragraph – “believed in her” is the answer.

    Wish you many, many wonderful years together.
    Ruth Plenty – Harmony and Hope Horse Haven, Portal, AZ

  4. Judith Ochs

    Wonderful story. Sometimes you have to follow your heart….Miss Rubynell has wonderful pedigree with both Secretariat (Great GF) and Seattle Slew (GG GF) on Dad’s side. Sounds like she is a great mare who simply needed the right human.

  5. Gayle Pruitt

    Wonderful story! So happy for them. Wishing them both “Happy Trails” for many many years to come!

  6. Catherine Aguilar

    Nice to hear about your success and so glad you two are together. Blessings to all who are Blessed with an OTTB. Catherine I have an OTTB mare also. I rescued her and found out about a year later her great grand dam was Secretariat’s “momma”. A blessing for me as well.

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